In 2017, hygge — the Scandinavian concept that perfected the art of coziness — was the international trend of note. This year, it’s all about the Japanese art of Wabi-sabi. This age-old philosophy embraces imperfection as a more “authentic” way of living. A crack in an heirloom vase? It’s a natural pattern that now enhances the character of the design. (In fact, cracks in ceramic or porcelain pieces are often filled with gold to highlight this “flaw”.) Marks on a wood table? These add interest to the surface. Handmade ceramics and natural textiles are also a favorite. Overall, the Wabi-sabi aesthetic is one that isn’t cluttered (the better to keep focus on the beautiful accents) and emphasizes an earthy color palette. Curious about adding a dash of Wabi-sabi spirit into your space? Here are just a few of our favorite pieces inspired by the aesthetic:
Instead of an allover design, this antique piece features nature-inspired inlaid motifs against a backdrop of wood. The exposed grain contributes an organic pattern that draws the eye around the stunning work of art.
The thin cracks and asymmetrical rings within the grain of this natural wood stool make it a great example of the Wabi-sabi aesthetic.
This clay desk lamp has a rustic feel, thanks to the subtle imperfections of the oatmeal glaze.
Though undoubtedly artful, the beauty in this accent bowl lies in how you can sense the hand of the artist in the painted motif that graces its service.
This is a chair with presence — the gracefully angled silhouette contributes a sense of movement to an interior. More sculpture than seat, it’s the kind of piece worthy of contemplation.